Martin's Blog

from a Slovenian living in Wales

Category: Health and medicine

My latest cat bite

Not that I think I will be slowly morphing into a human-feline mutant but I was surprised how badly I responded to a recent cat bite I sustained during my locuming in in a small animal practice in Blackpool. Since I graduated from the vet school in 1998 I have had a few bites and lots of scratches from my dearest feline friends but I have never had to seek medical help before.

This cat was a bit of a psycho as it was quite happy looking and content when the owner brought it into the consult room. Besides the fact that it was enormous and very very fat I had no warning what was to happen during the consult. After the owner and I opened the carrier door I even patted the cat gently and he was absolutely fine with it. The facial expression was showing slight worry (over what the hell is going to happen to him at the vet’s) but still relative sedateness.

Because of the enormous size of the cat we had to open up the carrier and before that we had to undo all the clips that held the top and that was quite a loud undertaking. Just as we removed the top the cats suddenly lunged forward – as it was in the direction of my right hand, took a good bite in it and just as quickly lunged back in. It all happeed so quickly even the bite wound took quite a few seconds before it started to bleed – see, even my hand was surprised 🙂

What I usually do after a bite is to do the usual initial disinfection by dousing the wound some surgical spirit – gritting teeth and growling un-recognisable rude words, preferably in Slovene, so no one around me understand me.

The next day I thought things were getting better so I decided to leave it only to start having problems in the evening. Luckily I already enquired with one of the nurses where the nearest A&E clinic is. In this case I went to the walk-in clinic in Blackpool.

Please look away if you are squeamish but this is what my hand looked like about 36 hours after the bite

about 36 hours after bite

can’t really see the swelling well but its there, trust me and the wound was suppurating quite nicely and very painful. Luckily the trip to the Whitegate walk-in centre resulted in me receiving antibiotics flucloxacillin that worked really well. But examples like this just show what doctors can get away with in regards to owner compliance compared to us vets. The treatment demanded me to take the capsule four times a day. And you were also not allowed to eat two hours before and one hour after taking the pill. Well, simple maths show you that was 12h of me not eating. I was usually awake for about 16 hours so I had to get my eatin’ done in those four hours throughout the day and still work at a very busy veterinary practice. Of course I couldn’t do that and I had to cheat a few times.

Luckily the medication still worked fine and this is my hand two days after start of treatment

about 48 hours after start of treatment

 

Wales prepovedal elektronske ovratnike za pse in mačke

Welsh Assembly GovernmentV sredo, 24. marca 2010 je v Walesu v veljavo stopil pravilnik Valežanske Skupščinske Vlade (Welsh Assembly Government), ki prepoveduje uporabo elektronskih (električnih) ovratnikov pri psih in mačkah.

Ti ovratniki se v večini primerov uporabljajo za odpravljanje neželenih vedenjskih navad pri psih. V skupščinski debati so utemeljili pravilnik s tem, da so ti ovratniki nepotrebno mučenje živali in pogosto ostanejo orodje lenih in brezbrižnih lastnikov, ki ne znajo odpravljati neželenih navad pri svojih hišnih ljubljencih na noben drug način.

Storilca, ki krši ta pravilnik lahko doleti zapor do 1 leta (51 tednov) in/ali denarna kazen do £5.000 (~€5.700)

Wales je prva država/pokrajina znotraj Velike Britanije, ki je uvedla takšno prepoved. Organizacije, ki se borijo za zaščito živali, se zavzemajo za takšno prepoved v celotni Britaniji.

That these collars are no gentle persuasion tools can be discovered by watching people trying them on themselves. In this video the guy tests it on himself and it starts at about 3.30 min, but you can watch the whole thing, I don’t care. This other video is shorter and its tested by a girl.

Both the above videos are actually very funny as they are done under consent, but it does have a serious back tone as dogs probably wouldn’t be so prepared to wear them.

Aja, pardon, sem šele zdaj opazil, da sem gornji del začel pisat v angleščini. Se mi ne ljubi zdej spreminjat.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-9fQq3CuXro#t=3m29s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sq996M-zgvU

Fighting tinnitus and the Ménière syndrome

Defined by the British tinnitus association as a ringing, whistling, buzzing and humming in the ears and/or head without any external source it has been a bit of an ailment for me for over a year now. It all started a few years back when I started to get presumably viral related Ménière syndrome attacks. They appeared about once or twice a year and got worse towards the end – the last one “flattened” me for about 12h with a few days recovery after that. Ménière syndrome are more or less severe attacks of vertigo, severe tinnitus, nausea with no hearing loss. There are probably more definitions around so please bare with me. The ones I described are the most obvious.

Auris Medical made a sound that tries to reproduce what tinnitus sounds like on top of music: tinnitus

After the last attack I had in April 2008 I was left with persistent undulating tinnitus. It wasn’t as severe as during the Ménière’s attack but it was very unsettling. After a few weeks it was still there and it slowly got me worrying. Whent to see my GP who referred me to a ENT (Ear nose and throat) specialist in Carmarthen. Since then I have been there for a few visits and also had a CT scan a couple MRI scans and various tests performed on me, much to my frustration at times.

I was told that the tinnitus is not going to be permanent and that it is due, in my case, to fluid build-up in the inner ear, however this was more of a presumption than a definitive diagnosis.The best thing I was advised to do was to get used to the sound (while I have it) and to not get frustrated or depressed by it.

The times, when you usually hear it the mos,t is in the evening and morning. This also includes during the night if you happen to wake up. At the beginning the tinnitus was so bad that I was waking up just from it. Going back to sleep after that was quite a job. The resulting insomnia can cause much more severe problems and I hope they weren’t that bad with me.

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